BANGKOK, Feb. 1 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's manufacturing sector expanded to the second highest level on record in January, adding to evidence of a recovery in the country's economic activity, a survey showed Wednesday.
The country's manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) rose for the second straight month to 54.5 in January, a jump from 52.5 in December 2022, as a signal of improving health in the country's manufacturing sector, according to S&P Global.
The latest PMI reading indicated an improving business climate in the Southeast Asia's second-largest economy for 13 consecutive months, led by increases in five key indexes of output, new orders, employment, stocks of purchases and longer suppliers' delivery times.
A PMI reading above 50 indicates an expansion of the manufacturing sector, while that below 50 represents a contraction.
The Thai manufacturing sector had a promising start in 2023, with the three main indicators of output, new orders and employment all reporting increases for the fourth time in the seven-year survey history, said Trevor Balchin, economics director at S&P Global Market Intelligence.
The 12-month outlook remained positive in general, but confidence fell to an 11-month low due to ongoing inflation concerns, he said. "Input-price inflation rose to a three-month high but remained well below the record set last August, while output-price inflation remained among the highest on record."